Governmental entities play a vital role in upholding federal labor and employment regulations and would face significant disruption in the event of a government shutdown. In September, we provided a brief review on how a shutdown would affect the government agencies that enforce federal labor and employment laws — the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
In an exceptional development that could dramatically change collegiate sports in the United States, the Regional Director for Region 1 of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recognized the fifteen players of the Dartmouth College men’s varsity basketball team as employees with a right to unionize under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), in a decision issued on February 5, 2024. As a result, the players are eligible to vote on whether they want to be represented by the Service Employees International Union, Local 560 for collective bargaining purposes. If a majority of the voting players vote in favor of the union, they will create the first-ever union of NCAA athletes.
The Dartmouth College decision signifies a shift by the NLRB. In 2015, the NLRB declined to exercise jurisdiction over a similar bid to unionize by Northwestern’s football team, thereby declining that opportunity to recognize student athletes as employees at that time. The opportunity was seized in the Dartmouth College decision, however, as the Regional Director distinguished the Northwestern decision – perhaps most notably, based on the fact that Dartmouth College competed in the Ivy League Conference, exclusively with other private schools that were subject to the NLRB’s jurisdiction, where Northwestern competed in the Big Ten Conference, in which every other school in the conference was a state-run institution that was not subject to the NLRB’s jurisdiction.Continue Reading NLRB’s recognition of Dartmouth College men’s basketball team as employees could change collegiate sports forever
On October 26, 2023, the National Labor Relations Board issued a final rule that dramatically lowered the standard for companies to qualify as joint employers. You can read more about the rule here. In short, the new rule provides that even reserved, unexercised, or indirect control, such as through an intermediary, over one or more of the rule’s seven enumerated terms or conditions of employment is sufficient to establish joint employment. There is no doubt that implementation of the new rule will drastically expand when companies will be considered joint employers and create additional costs and obstacles for employers.Continue Reading Dueling challenges to NLRB’s new joint employer rule succeed in extending effective date of rule
On October 26, 2023, the National Labor Relations Board issued a final rule to replace and essentially reverse the joint employer test issued under the Trump Administration. The new test drastically lowers the standard for companies to qualify as joint employers, making them responsible for labor violations and saddling them with obligations with respect to union negotiations. The final rule, which rescinds and replaces the prior regulation, is set to take effect on December 26, 2023, on a prospective basis only.
The 2020 rule required that a company have “substantial direct and immediate control” over the “essential terms or conditions” of a worker’s employment in order to be held liable as a joint employer. In a major “about face”, the new rule provides that even reserved, unexercised, or indirect control, such as through an intermediary, over one or more terms or conditions of employment is sufficient to establish joint employment. The Board published an “exhaustive list” of seven categories of terms or conditions that it will consider “essential” for purposes of the joint employer inquiry:
- Wages, benefits, and other compensation;
- Hours of work and scheduling;
- Assignment of duties to be performed;
- Supervision of the performed duties;
- Work rules and directions governing the manner, means, and methods of the performance of duties and the grounds for discipline;
- Tenure of the employment, including hiring and discharge; and
- Working conditions related to the safety and health of employees.
Government agencies are integral to the enforcement of federal labor and employment laws and will be dramatically impacted by a government shutdown. Below is a synopsis of the impact on the main government agencies responsible for enforcing federal labor and employment laws—the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC); the Department of Labor (DOL); and the…
The National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) issued a decision in Cemex Construction Materials Pacific, LLC announcing a new framework for determining when employers are required to bargain with unions without a representation election. In the decision, the NLRB overruled the long-standing standard in Linden Lumber because, in the Cemex majority’s view, it was inadequate to…
On August 2, the National Labor Relations Board issued the Stericycle, Inc. decision, in which it reinstated a modified version of the Board’s pro-employee Lutheran-Heritage standard for scrutinizing employer workplace rules. Under this new standard, a rule or policy is “presumptively unlawful” if it tends to chill employees from engaging in protected conduct under Section…
Over the past several years, a growing number of businesses that utilize delivery drivers have begun installing dashcam and similar surveillance technologies in their vehicles. This is for a host of a reasons, including to protect employee and customer safety, ensure driver efficiency, and monitor vehicle location. In response, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB…
The General Counsel for the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) issued a landmark memorandum yesterday broadly opining that most non-compete agreements violate Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) and directing the NLRB’s various regions to make challenging overbroad non-compete agreements an enforcement priority. After the NLRB’s sweeping decision this February in McLaren …
As the 2023 Virginia legislative session comes to a close, Governor Glenn Youngkin signed into law two new pieces of legislation that will expand the Commonwealth’s existing restriction on employee confidentiality agreements and restrict how employers may use employee social security numbers. Both new laws go into effect July 1, 2023.
Expanded prohibition on confidentiality…